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Style Magazine

In Memory of Debra Linn

Seventeen years ago, we approached Debra Linn—who at the time worked for the Roseville Chamber of Commerce—and asked if she knew anyone who would be interested in coming to work for our publishing company as a sales manager.

About a week later, she called and said she knew someone who was considering a career change and might fill the bill. She then proceeded to interview me about the position; when the interview (or interrogation!) ended, I asked who it was, and her answer was: “me!”

And so, it began—over 17 years of what became, and will always be, one of the most important friendships and business relationships of our lives and business careers.

Debra and Rodger


You must understand, we were a young start-up at that time, fighting and clawing against other publications, trying to find and solidify our place and position in the region. It seemed that every few months there was a new competitor coming at us, declaring they were bigger and better than STYLE. What they didn’t realize was that we had a few things going for us: a good, solid business plan; ownership and employees who put everything they had into the business; the nucleus of a solid sales and editorial team that believed in the product, and: Debra.

Most people don’t understand the magazine publishing business, how it really works, and how success is measured. Oh sure, advertising revenue is the key, especially for a “free” magazine. But the most important aspect of a business like this is the connection and relationship you build with your readers, finding the right way to keep them interested, and then making sure your advertisers recognize this. She understood this right from the start.

Debra, Terry, and Wendy


We hired Debra to run sales for us, but somewhere along the way her part in this “play” began to morph, and we found her integrated in every aspect of our business—editorial, design, and marketing—all in a very positive way, because she cared. She cared deeply about STYLE Magazine and what it meant to the community. Debra’s understanding and insight into our community was learned and honed over decades of living, working, and raising her family here; and being a part of numerous organizations serving the region—all of which helped make STYLE a better publication and a better company.

As much as she loved STYLE, there is no doubt about her greatest love: her family. Her husband, children, sisters, and especially her grandchildren meant everything to her; they were as important as the air she breathed. One mention of her children and grandchildren brought a smile to her face and  a light to any room.

Debra in her kitchen.


What will we remember and miss most about Debra? Her drive and competitiveness, her sense of humor, her devilish grin, and her love of life. I will close this with a fun memory. Debra was at our home waiting for us to come downstairs on our way to an event when she found a bowl of “Chex Mix” on the counter. She tried it a couple of times and when we saw her, she had a peculiar look on her face, and let us know that the treats were either stale or just bad tasting. Of course, that’s when we told her they were cat treats! We all fell on the floor laughing, and that night she called herself out online. She loved that story, and we never let her forget it.

She was our associate publisher and, more importantly, our friend. She was part of “Team Debendy” (Debra and Wendy) that would strive to reach goals for the publications. She was Terry’s “work wife”—always there to help and needle. She was the boss, mom, wife, and gran. Of course, she will be missed, but we honestly believe that all who knew her will remember her and smile; and, like us, know that we are better for having had her in our lives.

Debra and Roger Linn


—Terry & Wendy